This is a wedding card box I made for my best friend (I was his best man). He got married last summer and I'm just getting around to writing this instructable. It's made from maple and has a Batman themed side (for the groom) and a Hogwarts themed side (for the bride).
Step 1: The Wood
Picked up this 12' maple board from my local lumber yard. It was 4/4 and 12" wide. They only sell S4S (surfaced 4 sides) so the board ran me $80 as S4S is a premium charge. It had a darker streak in it but that's ok because it gave Gotham and Hogwarts a gloomier look.
Step 2: The Design
I made a quick 3D model the get a feel for size. Next, I had to find the images I wanted to engrave. I found some images online but they needed some tweaking. I traced them in Adobe Illustrator and then added the Bat Signal to Gotham.
Step 3: Construction
I began by cutting the pieces a little heavy (about 3/4") and stacking them in the shape I wanted. I aligned the grain so it would flow together. I then cut the miters for the corners and rabbeted the bottom for the removable bottom. I then laid the pieces in order in preparation for gluing. I used bar clamps but the boards were cupping so I added a ratchet strap and some quick clamps.
Step 4: Contruction Part 2
After gluing the sides together, I custom cut the top piece so it fit perfectly and then cut the slot on the CNC Router. I then glued it in place. Next, I rounded the edges over on the router table. Then a lot of sanding.
Step 5: Finishing
After sanding to 220 grit, it was time to finish it. I used Deft Brushing Lacquer for the first few coats, sanding between coats with steel wool. For the final coats I used Deft Spray Lacquer to get a smoother finish.
Step 6: Laser Engraving and Done
I masked off the box with extra wide masking tape to prevent residue on the non-engraved sections. After engraving on our Epilog Fusion 40-watt, I had to weed (peel off) the masking tape. Notice all the little windows and openings in Hogwarts; it takes forever to remove all those little pieces (and leaves your fingers stained for days). After everything was done, I wrapped it in 2 layers of bubble wrap for the 4 hour drive to the wedding.